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Parenting and Temperament
Artisan Parents
By Dr. Lovegood

Like Guardian parents, we tend to have a clear picture in our mind's eye of what Artisan parents look like. Guardians are the neat, structured, and rigid parents while Artisans are the flexible, messy, unpredictable parents. Of course many Guardians and Artisans don't fit neatly into either group, but it still seems to be the American perception of the two kinds of parents.

When people grow up, they are likely to have one of two complaints about their parents. The first is that the parents were unorganized, undependable, and didn't demand enough self-discipline. The second is that the parents acted like inflexible robots with excessively high expectations. Guardians with Artisan parents may not learn organization and may slack off because they can, Rationals may be turned off by their lack of concern with anything but the present, and Idealists may find their parents to be superficial.

Flexibility is an Artisan parent's strongest suit as well as being one of their weaknesses. When things come up suddenly (as they often do with children), Artisan parents can generally adapt with ease. They encourage their children to try many different activities and happily dive into things headlong with their kids so everyone is having fun together. They are likely to stop what they're doing to grab a good moment to play with a child. A person fortunate enough to grow up in a mature Artisan's home generally has a strong sense of their unique identity, the ability to adapt, and a willingness to risk failure in order to succeed.

Some potential problems for Artisan parents can include waiting too long to address a problem, vicarious living, and inconsistent discipline. An Artisan is likely to want to allow their child to solve their problems on their own. Also, they are likely to feel that the child needs to learn to toughen up. This can cause a problem to reach a crisis stage before the Artisan finally does something. Some Artisans hope that their children will fulfill their own dreams in sports or other physical activities. They may not notice that the child hates it. Disciplining children is hard for all parents, but it can be especially difficult for Artisans who can find it difficult to develop and maintain a consistent program.

Here are some tips on communicating with your Artisan parent. Do not talk down to them. You might feel superior because you are better organized, more dependable, or more logical. Remember that you aren't better, you're simply different. Your parents have seen a lot more of the world than you have.

Be pragmatic. An Artisan parent usually isn't wildly interested in high flown theories or a list of demands. A bit of drama is fine as long as you know that your parent can probably see right through your act. Whatever ideas you have need to make sense in the here and now. Because Artisans like to keep moving, you can often have better conversations with them when you are doing something together, whether it is laundry, car repair, sports, or some other activity. This works especially well with quiet Artisans.

 

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